Google Assistant Driving Mode Available in More Countries
Google rolled out driving mode in Google Assistant late last year in English in the US. Google first announced the feature at I/O 2019, so the company has taken its own sweet time in actually rolling it out to Android users.
Google Assistant Driving Mode Goes International
As announced by Shweta, Community Manager on the Google support forums, Google Assistant driving mode in Maps will now be available to Android users in Australia, Great Britain, Ireland, India, and Singapore. Like in the US, the feature will only be available in English.
The international expansion of the feature comes despite driving mode in Google Assistant still being in “early preview.” Google Assistant driving mode will be available on devices with a minimum of 4GB RAM and running Android 9.0+.
What Is Google Assistant Driving Mode?
Google Assistant driving mode enables a more driving-friendly Assistant interface that lets you use your voice to make calls, send texts, control media playback from your favorite music streaming service, etc, so that you can focus on driving. You will be able to do all this and more using just your voice while using Google Maps navigation.
There’s also an App Launcher in Google Assistant driving mode, which you can use to quickly access relevant apps that can be used while driving like YouTube Music, Google Podcasts, etc.
How to Enable Google Assistant Driving Mode
Before you can try out Google Assistant driving mode on your Android device, you must turn on Assistant notifications to get message notifications and grant access to your phonebook.
Since the feature is in preview, you will first have to opt-in to try out on Google Assistant driving mode on your Android device. For this, just say, “Hey Google, open Assistant settings.” From the settings page that opens, go to Transportation > Driving mode and enable the Driving mode option.
To start Assistant driving mode, open Google Maps on your Android device, search for a location and then start navigating to it. If the feature has already been rolled out in your region, the Google Assistant driving mode interface should show up on your device.